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Thursday, June 21, 2012

Would you wait to kiss until your wedding day?

When Andrew and Carissa fell in love, they decided to wait to have their first kiss until their wedding ceremony...

I was really curious about their experience--can you imagine the willpower?!--so the adorable couple agreed to answer my five questions...

Why did you choose to wait until your wedding day to have your first kiss?
Andrew: It was something we both thought would be special to save until the day we officially became one. Plus, I'm Italian and didn't want to get in temptation's way of having a pre-mature Andrew, Jr.
Carissa: We met when we were 17, and neither of us had ever kissed anyone before. So, maybe we didn't even know what we were missing! I don't actually remember talking about it--it was just something we both knew we wanted to save for that moment when the minister says, 'You may kiss your bride.'

How long did you wait? Was it tough?
Andrew: I waited three years. I wanted to kiss her the day I met her. Yes, there were times it was very tough, but I'd settle for her eyes.
Carissa: I remember the first time I really wanted to kiss him. He had been in Ethiopia for a month, and had gotten terribly sick. I was flying out to see him when he got home, and I remember thinking there would be no way I would be able to not kiss him when I saw him...Yeah. It was sometimes quite hard.
When you finally kissed, were you nervous?
Andrew: I wasn't nervous. But I definitely wasn't prepared. When my dad (who was marrying us) said we could kiss, I was like, oh man, I totally forgot we got to do this! Then I got all serious, but Carissa wouldn't have any of it and exploded as I landed upon her lips. And that was it. Our first kiss was really a first laughing while our lips were touching.
Carissa: I remember standing up there, hearing Andrew being told to kiss his bride, and thinking, 'We have no idea how to do this...' Which made me laugh, right as our 'kiss' began. We took the next few weeks to perfect the skill on our honeymoon.

What did your friends and family think?
Andrew: I have a feeling a lot of people thought we were crazy.
Carissa: I dont think most people even knew, or if they did, they probably didn't believe us--until they saw our failure on the wedding day! But I know my sweet Gramps thought it was quite questionable. 'If you love a girl, you kiss her!'

Anything surprising about the overall experience?
Carissa: Well, as silly as it may sound, that kind of tension was actually quite romantic! It's sweet to me, when I recall how utterly in love we were and convinced of each other's hearts, that it hardly mattered what each other's mouths tasted like. That love has only gotten sweeter with time--but so does the kissing!

Thanks so much for sharing your story, Andrew and Carissa!
What do you think? Would you consider saving your first kiss for your wedding day? Could you? Or would you rather kiss beforehand?

P.S. How old were you when you had your first kiss? And how long do you wait to sleep with someone?

(Photos by Lydia Jane Photography, courtesy of Andrew and Carissa)

322 comments:

«Oldest   ‹Older   201 – 322 of 322
Noor said...

I think everyone should be this way. All of that stuff is meant for two by God for when your man and wife.

Gray Skies said...

I know two couples who waited until their wedding to kiss for the first time, and both kisses were super awkward to watch. But I really admired them for making that decision and sticking to it - especially my friends who had dated for three years without kissing.

My husband and I didn't kiss until a month after we were engaged, but we got engaged a month after we started dating :) But we chose not to kiss during the wedding ceremony.

Joanna Goddard said...

thanks for the feedback on deleted comments! i always value constructive criticism and thoughtful dialogue, and encourage it daily on this blog.

here's what happened here: earlier today, i was deleting some comments myself -- i kept all the comments that disagreed except a small handful that personally attacked the couple. i deleted those because, although i thought it was fine for people to disagree with the kissing concept (for whatever reason) and kept those comments up, i felt like i should protect the couple from pointed *personal* attacks. that's all.

after a while, i left my computer to take care of toby, so i asked my intern to take over comment moderation. she may have deleted more zealously than i did. i apologize if some comments were deleted and should have been kept. we wanted only to delete the comments that were blatant personal attacks, not those that were disagreeing or making valid points about the concept of waiting to kiss. those are FINE, of course--and welcomed!!

i always encourage thoughtful dialogue and welcome critiques of anything i put on this blog. thank you so much for reading and understanding!! joanna

soyphet said...

Nope. Couldn't and didn't wait. And I can't imagine not kissing my boyfriend everyday. I feel like that's my chance to show him I love him everyday, even if we're not married yet.

Maggie said...

o.m.g. love this. love them. love it all! so incredibly romantic.

Maggie said...

I think it's awesome when two people, (attractive people at that) have such a deep love & control. I love my husband & I've loved kissing his since date #1, but to have a relationship with passion without being physical would have been so amazing.

leah bell said...

i'm singing "its in his kiss - that's where it is - oh yeah!" i couldn't ever do it, + my fiancé definitely couldn't either! :)

17 beats. said...

this seems so impossible !! i couldn't do it, but cheers to the happy couple.

Cecilia said...

No, I couldn't and wouldn't wait. I feel that the first kiss should be shared between the two of you and should be the action of the emotions of a moment. Many times words cannot convey all that I am experiencing and a kiss just fills in the rest.

amanda saliga said...

That is so rare it makes it that beautiful!

Anonymous said...

My comment was deleted and all I said was they are a really cute couple but that Joanna forgot to mention their strong religious background as having to do something with this story....not cool

Erica @ Acire Adventures said...

Wow! I guess since they had never kissed anyone, that may have made it a little more doable. But seriously, after my first kiss at age 13, there was no stopping me! Kissing is too much fun, I've kissed so many people, guys and girls. I can't imagine not being able to have all that fun kissing before I had to save my kisses for one person! :)

Janie Kamenar said...

BTW: We saved our first kiss for our wedding day but we didn't tell people or make a big deal about it at the wedding. It was for us, not for them. We only told those who asked us about it.

My dentist laughed outright at my dad when he told her, however. As if it was completely impossible and he was a gullible fool for believing we were doing that.

Sarette Stahnke said...

I am actually doing this as well! It makes me quite nervous to think of maybe bumping teeth in front of everyone! But their photos are adorable & maybe it won't be so bad!

Anonymous said...

I am 30 days away from my wedding, and my fiancé was my first kiss. Even though my fiancé and I have not waited to kiss until our wedding, we have waited to make love (and proud of it!) so needless to say we are both eagerly awaiting our wedding night. I haven't read all these posts, but I have seen a few questions along the lines of "Is that wise?" I really think it is. This couple took the waiting-for-the-love-of-their-life to the next level, and I admire that in them. Anyway, I am so so so happy knowing that on my wedding night I will give my new husband something that I have never given anyone else. It's the ultimate wedding gift. And like this couple said -- you'll have your whole honeymoon (how about lives!) to perfect the art.

Here's to love!

Thank you for your blog. I've been enjoying it.

Martha H.
Florida

Enelya said...

Absolutely! And I know several couples who have done the same thing. :)

his little lady said...

oh gosh, the thought of having to save a kiss till marriage almost sounds unbearable, and not so fun. but they make it all sound so romantic. they are simply the most beautiful couple. how perfect!
xo TJ

Carol said...

It's quite sweet that they did it, and I support people's right to do whatever they feel is best for them.

But while I support their choice, I can't really understand it!

I think that the physical side of a relationship is important, and I would need to know that my partner and I were compatible BEFORE we got married! Plus, kissing is nice!

But if you don't know what you're missing, and you don't know that there's such a thing as a bad lover, then I suppose it wouldn't be an issue, you would just work with what you've got!

Lindsay said...

My boyfriend and I are waiting to kiss each other's lips till our wedding. It's SO hard, and it's not always easy to stop just at kissing his face. We're long distance right now, though, and that helps. I know that when we're finally together again and, gosh!, when we're finally married, everything will be unleashed. I cannot wait, but I know it's totally worth the wait.

kelsea said...

Hi. I'm the friend Judy referred to above. We do discuss your posts very often - at least several times per week. Judy was the one who introduced me to your blog a few years (has it been that long?!) ago. I read this post in bed this morning. The comment that called this practice out as misogynistic really resonated with me. I discussed it with my boyfriend on our way to work and I talked about it over the phone with Judy on my break. I was very upset to find that you had deleted it. The comment didn't directly disrespect the couple, but rather pointed out an interesting and important view of this practice. That comment made me think and it contributed to the discussion. It's incredibly disheartening that you delete comments you disagree with. Yes, it's your blog. But don't pretend you want to hear what we think if you really just want to hear what you think reiterated and praised. I'm honestly disappointed.

kelsea said...

Ah, I now see that you already commented on the deleted comment issue. I wish the person whose comment was deleted originally (the one about this practice being misogynistic and "slut-shaming") would comment again and elaborate. I thought it was an interesting idea and worthy of discussion.

kelsea said...

BTW @ Anonymous 8:14pm we're actually referring to a different comment. The one I told Judy about was submitted very early on (probably the 5th or 6th comment on this post, originally) and was discussing the concept of "slut-shaming." (http://finallyfeminism101.wordpress.com/2010/04/04/what-is-slut-shaming/)

But apparently a few were deleted.

Anonymous said...

Hi Judy, this is the anon that posted about how putting sexual activity on a pedestal is problematic, but I've noticed that since then both of my posts have been deleted. Post like this upset and disturb me, because they're often filled with coded language about how people who don't abstain are somehow less worthy than people who keep their hymen intact till there married. People talk about how naysayers are saying all kinds of rude things, but how do you think it comes off for people who are sexually active that they "lack will power", are not as "pure", and that they've "given their gifts" away early. Come on.

K said...

The one thing no one has yet mentioned positively is that these two chose to have their first kiss in public. I think that's important. Marriage isn't just a private sex agreement; it involves the joining of two lives. That means twining together all his family and friends and all her family and friends. All the little petty things that frustrate and snarl in people, melted together in a suddenly claustrophobic cauldron with extra heat from new sets of manners, the stress of planning/running a wedding, and the craziness of in-laws. What a great symbol of their trust in (or willingness to be ragged by) their two clans that they chose to have their first kiss in front of these people. I bet that at the very least, it gave everyone at the reception something to talk about-like Grandpa ;-)

Anonymous said...

I've looked through the comments, and I see that other people have been backing me up and I really appreciate it. :^) Although I like reading Cup of Jo, sometimes the world views expressed on this blog are a little too narrow minded for my tastes, and although I can be curt, I am genuinely trying to bring relevant discussion to this forum.

If people are interested in further learning about why I commented on how problematic the concept of virginity is, here is a link:

http://www.thefword.org.uk/blog/2008/11/virginity_is_an

Another thing to read up on, is how virginity pledges are problematic, and how they don't lead to a comprehensive understanding about safer sex.

I thank the commenter than has already posted the slut-shaming explanation, and if there are any other feminists out there that have better links, feel free to post them.

Anonymous said...

We saved sex until married. My husband was my first kiss (after 2 weeks into the relationship), my first EVERYTHING.

There are so many times I am so grateful I've just been with one man. In my mind he is the most incredible lover ever!! (Even though he's probably not, but it's what I know).

I admire the strength of this couple, seems impossible not to kiss, but they have their reasons. So glad to see people making a stand, instead of falling for anything!

Anonymous said...

I dislike the fact that it seems to suggest that kisses can only be sexual.

My kisses tell my partner so much other than just 'I want to bed you'. It's a whole different type of communication.

They missed out on three years of that. Makes me sad.

Polly Rowan said...

no way! what if he was a terrible kisser! haha. No I don't really see the point. maybe waiting to sleep with each other I understand, but waiting to kiss is taking it quite far. I kissed my boyfriend before we were even officially together and we've been together for over a year now x

Isabelle said...

Very cute story but neeeh... can't relate...
It all seems too "romanticy" to me; a bit like those Anne of green Gables books I was reading as a kid
But I do think they are adorable and seem like great people... Their adoption story is wonderful. They have the biggest hearts !
Cheers to them !

Ashleigh said...

I think it's great!

A couple years before I met my now husband I decided to not kiss (or do anything else) with a boyfriend until our wedding day. I had been in relationships before and had thrown my heart and soul into them because of the physical side. I met my husband through an ex boyfriend and we became friends (very slowly) and to cut a long story short we both agreed that our 'line' was holding handing. He hadn't had any girlfriends before me, and really didn't enjoy his first and only kiss (who does?). Anyway, we got married after 2 years of dating and our first kiss was amazing! And we spent our honeymoon discovering everything and learning how to kiss :)

Jamie said...

My husband and I actually did wait to kiss until the moment the pastor said, "You may now kiss your bride."
We had both been in relationships before where a lot was given away and we wanted our dating/engagement time to look entirely different than anything we had ever experienced before. We both knew we were going to marry each other very early in our relationship (as in, the day we started dating) and we wanted to honor one another and leave something to the wedding day/night.
It was the hardest thing I have ever done, because at some point its the natural way to demonstrate deep affection for a person. I loved him and wanted to show him, but I wouldn't trade it for the world. We learned to love and care for one another in an incredibly visceral way as we set aside our own desires in order to keep the promise we had made to one another. It was the best decision we made in preparing for our wedding.
We just celebrated our second anniversary and its been the most joyous time of each of our lives.
I'm glad our first kiss was on our wedding day.

Vana said...

I am not in a serious relationship right now (I recently split up with mey longterm fiancé of 5 years) but I am dating a guy. Well actually it's not even dating, we just love spending time together, alone or with others and so we make time for it once or twice a week. I'm a bit sensitive to "couple things" at the moment ;)
Well I met this guy, before I took the definite decision to leave my fiancé but when we first met it was just mutual sympahty - at least from my side, he told me later, that he liked me from the start :) Of course I thoght, interesting man, which wasn't hard, because he's so tall with long hair and a beard :)
He's also 16 years older than me, so at first I was looking at him as a really good friend, because we got very close very quickly. He was the man to talk to, when I got depressed by my relationship and he really helped me through the last 8 months.
One day, afert we'd know eachother for about 2 months and regularly met, he told me, that he likes me more than just a friend, but that he would never ever do anything, as long as I don't want it and as long as I'm convinced that I could still save my relationship. He was wonderful really. Patient, comprehenive, always there for me in a very unselfish way. Of cours that made me like him even more. And of course at the time where he confessed, that he liked me a lot I was falling for him already. We were just very good at hiding it from eachother :)
We went on, spending a lot of time together. Of course I hugged him when we met and sometimes when we sat on a bank, I wold lean in to him a bit. And there WAS tension, hell yeah, a lot of it! :D But I knew, that he himself would never take the first step because it was his was to show me that he liked and respected me.
One night, must have been about 4 months after we met, I was supposed to meet friends at a bar. But I met him before, just for a beer and one of our beloved long talks and once again I felt so good in his presence. After that he accompanied me to that other bar - we walked arm in arm. Because at that time nobody knew that I was seeing him I pulled him into the entrance of a building to say goodbye to him. And this time I knew that I could'nt just give him a hug and go away, it would kill me and I would hate myself for the rest of the night! So I made the move and kissed him! And it tasted sooo good! It was long and tender and passionate but totally innocent at the same time!
And even though we don't have to hide anymore now (I still like to hold back in the presence of our friends, because I love the special tension of wanting to kiss someone but not doing it :)), kissing him is still the most special thing to me. He's a wonderful kisser and all the feelings we share just "flow" through our kisses. I love it and I love that we have waited so long.

But: Cudos to Carissa and her husband but i could have never ever waited until the wedding day - which may be also because at the moment I really can't picture myself as a married woman :)

Ana Simões said...

What do you do with a boyfriend if you don't kiss him?? Girlfriends are better to talk to; family supports you the most... boyfriends and husbands are the kissing (& all other nice things related) material :)))

Stephen said...

Many of my friends have waited to have sex until they were married. Nearly all of them waited due to their Christian faith but also believing that a strong emotional and spiritual connection should be the basis for a long-term relationship. I think this it's incredibly romantic that this couple waited to kiss and allowed themselves to share something in marriage that belongs only to the two of them. Wonderful.

Care Palm said...

My husband was my first kiss and I thought about waiting until our wedding but we both lacked the willpower. Cheers to them for holding out! Congrats on the Wedding.

Anonymous said...

If you don't kiss and don't have sex, what makes you a real couple ?

virginia said...

I won't be commenting on or reading this blog anymore after my second comment (which did not personally attack the couple, but stated that I had a right to my opinion to disagree and that if the couple didn't want people disagreeing with them on the internet, they shouldn't blog about their lives) was deleted. And it definitely was deleted, because another commenter responded to it directly and when I looked back to read over what I wrote and see if I had, in fact, been insensitive, it wasn't there. Like the guy in the post, I'm Italian, and can be hotheaded, and I was ready to apologize if I was in the wrong. But now we'll never know.

More than that, I'm incredibly disappointed that a discussion about whether this reflects misogynistic sexual tradition and slut-shaming was deleted. Joanna, you try to make your blog relevant to modern women - well, that's incredibly relevant and an important discussion that women should be having. There are lots of great blogs and forums where discussions like this are welcome and encouraged, and that's where I'll be spending my time from now on.

There seems to be an idea that if you're not agreeing with everything someone says, you're being rude, or attacking her, or jealous. I understand it's more comfortable to live in a homogenized world where your views, values, or decisions are never challenged, but disagreement (both polite and passionate) is reality. All of us need to stop and consider, "Is this person really being unkind to me, or am I just upset that they aren't validating me?"

Sayonara, Cup of Jo.

A.Co said...

I could NEVERRRRRR wait, but find it so fascinating and wild that they did :)

Anonymous said...

I guess if you're that young and you end up staying together... I didn't have my first real kiss until I was 18, so older than them, but I was hooked! Kissing's just so much fun and I'd kiss almost anybody! And I'm not marrying the first person I kissed... or the second... third... fourth etc :) I feel the same way about sex, it's fun and I like to have fun with people, but to each her own....

Amber, theAmberShow said...

I grew up strict Christian, and this was held as an ideal. For me, it was manipulative and condescending to be told that this ideal was the ultimate in love. It turned out to be wildly untrue in my life.

However, I hate when people tell me what to do with my body, and I'm not going to try to tell THEM they were wrong. These two look happy, and although my first reaction is "Very strange!" (something I would say to their faces), they made a choice for themselves.

Good enough for me.

Anonymous said...

they look so sweet and in love!!

The Mickelsens said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

My husband and I didn't kiss one another till ou wedding day. I had kissed people back in high school, but often felt I was a little used for physicalness. I think it made me always worry that men would always focus on the physical and it also made me afraid that my husband would leave me at some point if he had the opportunity to physical be with someone better than me. I felt this way before dating my husband. I am religious and I had prayed to know what I should do because I did want to trust my future husband. And I felt that I should wait until our wedding day to kiss him. When I started to date my current husband and he went in for our first kiss I told him I would only kiss the man I was going to marry and he told me that for me he was willing to wait till then. And we did. We have a great marriage and I was able to overcome my own fears about a "cheating" husband. I know it's not for everyone, but for us, it was what we needed. We just celebrated five years and love to kiss!

Ana Bispo said...

Anonymous 13:41

relationship should not be only based on physical attraction, friendship and shared values also counts

Evdokia Tsiligiridou said...

it's like you are in front of the most tasty dessert,waiting with a spoon but you can not eat it...

kisses & touches e.t.c. are part of a relationship too. & you cannot make fasting in those things. life is too short to wait for some things...

i think :)

dc said...

What if one of them had been hit by a car the week before the wedding, can you imagine the regret of never having kissed your beloved? Having lost a dear 17 year old from our family recently, it's my opinion that life is too short for this kind of silly deprivation.

Kate said...

If it's important to them, then good for them. For me, it sounds a bit bizarre. Is that a religious thing? What does being Italian have to do with it? I admit that I can't fathom this at all, but I mean no snark with it. I live in the (mostly) secular UK and have never heard of anything like this for non-religious reasons.

Those of you who made similar choices - why? Religion, culture, kicks?

Anonymous said...

i remember the first kiss between my [now] husband and i and it was definitely not very wedding appropriate! :) however, i think this is very sweet and not weird or crazy at all. my husband and i have not had sex with anyone but each other (married at 25) and i honestly can't imagine sharing such intimacy with more than one person. we can't say that we haven't kissed others like these two can, but that would be pretty amazing.

Cherise L. C. said...

I know a lot of couples who can kiss and go no further, but because I had kissed a previous boyfriend and knew how powerfully it affected me, my (now) husband and I decided to do the same thing and save our first kiss for the wedding. Hard at times, but it was totally worth it for us because it forced us to learn to show affection in ways besides physical ones. Since we had decided to save sexual intimacy for marriage, not kissing also DEFINITELY made keeping that conviction easier!
Some of our friends thought we were crazy, and I know it's not for everyone, but it definitely was good for our relationship. (Oh, and it has had NO negative affects on our passion after marriage!) :)

Rhianna Nelson said...

I really love this post! I'm so impressed by couples that choose to do what is right for them and stick to their guns regardless of what others say! Coming from a very conservative Christian background but growing up in Western culture I was given so many conflicting views about intimacy and felt so confused for such a long time (and sometimes still do).

It's sometimes even difficult now because people always question me about sex as soon as they find out I have a religious background...luckily I've become a little more confident though. So good work to Andrew & Carissa I say! Everyone should do what's right for them and I think your first kiss looks so filled with joy and absolutely adorable :D Rhi xx

The Wildest of Dreams

PS. Oh and like everyone else, I LOVE your dress, Carissa!!

Halle B said...

I agree with people who thought this was weird. It seems so repressive to not kiss! Kissing shouldn't be some magical moment- it should be a way to show affection. This makes me afraid that this couple's children will be taught to be afraid of contact with other people and will ultimately have body image/other problems. Also, the fact that they never kissed totally made it seem as though they rushed into marriage. Married at 20!!! Thats a reason for the high rate of divorce. People don't truly know their partner and then the marriage fails. Not to say that will happen to this lovely couple but their situation really freaks me out.

lynne said...

I love this story. What a thoughtful couple to consider what they want so carefully. I love the idea that self-control is possible for human beings. :)

Also - Joanna you are such a sweetheart. I love the tone you set on your blog.

Rhianna Nelson said...

PPS. I just read back on the comments - sheesh you guys can be intense!! I know christian couples who choose to have sex before marriage, and christian couples who wait, or there are christian couples who make out (oftentimes a lot!) before they get married and others who make the same decision that Andrew & Carissa made.

Religion doesn't have to be repressive!! I know it is often portrayed to be that way, but it's really not! No matter who you are - religious or otherwise - sex, intimacy and what works in a relationship should be a personal choice made between the couple, that others should be understanding of.

And anyway, aren't we going backwards if we're fighting for freedom of sexuality and then condemning people for their choice to abstain? I don't understand!!

Gillian said...

I'm 24 and I've never kissed anyone. I don't know if I'll wait until the altar (although I actually am leaning in that direction now) but I want to save kissing at least until I'm engaged. It's giving of my body to someone else and I am saving my body for the man I marry. Call me old-fashioned, but that's what I believe is right :-)

Also, the sweetest wedding kiss I ever saw was some of my friends who had never kissed before their wedding. He had, I think, kissed a girl he dated previously, but it was her first kiss ever, and I will never forget the look of utter joy and wonder on her face. Definitely one of the most memorable wedding kisses!

Jeanette said...

I think they're lovely! But I wouldn't want to wait till marriage. I think there needs to be a level of physical intimacy before you get married...My husband and I were both virgins and we are so glad...but I cannot imagine going from a first kiss to "alltheway" in one evening...Woah!

RGnagy said...

My husband and I waited to kiss until our wedding day. Actually, we didn't really touch at all until we got engaged. Then we started holding hands. =)
Our first kiss was amazing. Not awkward, just amazing. Most of our guests knew we had waited and were just as excited as we were.
We're not weird, we're not Amish or anything like that... we just wanted to glorify God in our relationship and we couldn't have done that if we were constantly being tempted by desiring one another before we were married. I've had people ask me if it was hard going 'from zero to sixty' after our wedding. NO. It was amazing. I married my best friend and I felt completely comfortable and safe with him. We figured everything out just fine. =)

Sarah said...

I'm all for waiting a little while so you can get to know eachother but I never could have waited until my wedding day. This is mainly because I have fallen hard for guys in the past, finally kissed them and everything I felt for them dispeared in the blink of an eye. There was NO chemistry behind the kiss! For me a bad kiss is the biggest turn-off - I would practucally run away. And when I kissed my husband for the first time, I knew we had something. Still get butterflies when I think about it.

Amie said...

Can't we all just agree to be happy for this couple - that they are in love and were sweet enough to share their love story with us when asked?? If you don't agree, at least just wish them well. :)
Oh, and of course we all have the freedom to voice our opinions & I think we should all realize that Joanna has the freedom as well to voice her opinion by deleting comments she doesn't want on her blog. It goes both ways. :)

Milana said...

There have been many stories shared about young couples waiting, so I thought I'd share my own (different) young couple story, in the hopes of adding to the discussion of how diverse romance can be.

I too met my husband young (I was 20; he was 19 -- younger man, ooooo!). However, I'd had significant sexual experience by that point. (He'd had some as well, though not as much as me, saucy tart that I was.) Most of my experiences with sex prior to meeting him were not good ones, and as an adult I know now that I was a troubled teenager. Which I regret, but it's all part of who I am today, I suppose.

Anyway -- being that I was, I am sorry to say, quite a hussy, I thought nothing of being physically intimate with my 19-year-old future husband, even though I wasn't at all interested in a relationship at the time. He, though, really wanted a relationship, and I liked him a lot, so I decided to try it.

I fell in love with him for a million different reasons, but the one I think may be of interest to this discussion is this: through our physical intimacy, I really came to know what being loved felt like. It was so different from anything else I'd experienced, and I realized that sexuality had a rightful place in my life, but a more rewarding and positive one than before.

All this to say: for me, physical intimacy was a crucial part of my finding my true love. It made me love him more, made me value myself more -- changed my life, really. I think it's different for everyone, and to some mine might not be the most romantic of stories. But when we did get married (some years after we met), I felt so truly known, so accepted and loved in every way, and I couldn't ask for anything more.

Now we have been together over 12 years, and we have a 2-year-old son in NYC, just like Jo! I feel lucky every day for that 19-year-old my husband was, and for the man he is now.

Anonymous said...

@Virginia, all of your lovely little comments are still there...

Slightly Smiling said...

Honestly, I hadn't even considered this before. I'm twenty and I haven't kissed anyone yet, but I'd always assumed that when I met that special someone or when I fell in love, it would just happen - and I wouldn't be against it. That being said, I do think it's a special thing and it's cute that they waited for their wedding day. I still think that if I met someone and it felt right I wouldn't wait for the wedding day. I think what Allyn said about kissing the night before so that it could be thier own special, private moment is really sweet and I like that sentiment - of keeping it something personal and special.

Erin M. Evans said...

"Yes, there were times it was very tough, but I'd settle for her eyes." Oh-my-gosh beyond sweet!

Sarah Kathie Tran said...

Miss Joanna!

I love this! Thank you for sharing such a cute story. I would much rather wait for the wedding day! I woke up one day and decided I would do so. There's something so pure and holy about a first kiss and while my first reservation was, how weird! Kissing in front of your parents and all these folks. I realize now what a lovely thing to share the sweetness of such a moment between husband and wife with people who love and cherish you.

Besides, these lips of mine are expensive ;)

lindsay marie said...

I think its special what this couple did....Im not sure how they managed to do it! I have no self control myself. And I totally get what he meant by being Italian! As a 21 year old I went to Italy, crushing on Italian boys, I KNOW WHAT HE MEANS TOO WELL, haha

Maggie said...

Whoever said

Anonymous said...
If you don't kiss and don't have sex, what makes you a real couple ?

is incredibly sad. Boo to you!

Amielle said...

I have so much respect for couples who make and then keep those kind of commitments! That takes a lot of willpower and goes against what a lot of people think is 'normal'. Whether or not everyone thinks they could/n't do it or whether it's healthy or not, obviously it worked for them and that's what counts.

Kiley Kate said...

I can't help but think of that horrifying TLC clip from the Virgin Diaries where the couple practically eats each other...this seems much more tame. I don't think I could have waited that long for a kiss, I'm far too affectionate

Erin said...

i respect you for posting this :)

i love that they waited - everyone can make their own choice. and i think it's VERY romantic. for, the longer the waiting - the sweeter the kiss.

ps -
you rock!

t.a. said...

I'm not really expecting anyone to get to my comment, but I want to put it up anyway: Physical intimacy is exactly that - intimate. It's a privilege more than a right, a gift more than (it should be) an expectation. I love their decision and applaud their discipline. And I love what the bride said, "...convinced of each other's hearts.." For some more than others there is a certain level of trust to be obtained. There's an older Jewish wedding custom, wherein - after the ceremony - the newlyweds would go off and consummate the marriage as the guests waited for their return.
So, waiting for a kiss is none too crazy.

Carrie said...

My husband and I waited to kiss until our wedding day. I never knew there were so many other people who did that until I scrolled through these comments!

We are Christians, and do believe sex is meant for marriage. But our religious beliefs didn't fuel the waiting-to-kiss choice.

My husband had had a rocky past with girls before he came to Christ and wanted to show me he was trustworthy and self-controlled. He succeeded.

There is no need to "sample the goods". The goods are amazing when fueled by passionate love!

Charlotte Maytham-Klassen said...

Me and my husband chose to save our kiss for marriage. It was never easy because I was studying at school, coming home a few times a year.We allowed our friendship to blossom, while we put the physical fun on hold. We were a little afraid the wedding kiss would be awkward but when the time came it was the most natural thing. Id say make sure you do it for the right reasons and it can be a wonderful part of a budding relationship.

Beautiful couple!

fashionpas said...

Oh gosh. It's a bit weird. I do believe people should know each other when they decide to commit to each other. But then again, I don't believe that two need to be married in any official way in order to do so...

Candice said...

That's just adorable of them! I like the idea a lot and I think it's very special that they did it like that.

I didn't wait until marriage for mine but it was with my now husband 1 week before we got married. I was 19 and he was 23 and it was our first kiss for both of us :)

candiceandbeauty.blogspot.com

Luna said...

One thing is for sure, they've probably be doing gazillion more kissing since. Anyway, it's a personal choice, like Politics and Religion.

That aside, I just came back from visiting their blog, and it's so lovely to read about the couple behind 'the kiss' issue. They have a new follower here.

Jo, you do link to some pretty great blogs out there. Some I wouldn't have tried myself.

likeschocolate said...

My husband and I did not kiss until our wedding day! We have been married for 15 years. I read some of the comments that people wondered if it was wise. The thing is when you don't kiss you see things not through the lens of passion, but for what they are. We adore each other and are so happy we choose to wait!

Anonymous said...

I had my first kiss when I was very young - I believe around the beginning of middle school. I and my best friend who was a guy tried it because we saw two adults do it. We thought it was boring afterwords and kind of gross. Now we're both 19 and laugh about it and how much our perspectives have changed every once and a while. (we're still just friends though)

L said...

I think it is so sweet and beautiful to wait. My cousin did the same. My husband and I kissed after 3 weeks of every day hangouts, but we didn't sleep together until our wedding night. It was so special and still is, so I can only imagine what saving a kiss would've been like.

søt said...

Although I respect their decision (it's their own choise after all), I think it is quite stupid.

Kissing and eveything sexual is very important in a relationship, it has to be good. What if (s)he's a terrible kisser, what if they have lousy sex.

It all sounds very romantic, but it's important to know every aspect of your relationship works before you get married. You can love each other as much as you want, if the sex/kissing/... is terrible, you probably won't stay together.

Fiona said...

No, it’s not cute and it’s not romantic. No kissing till marriage? A very bad idea, this fetishisation of chastity is very damaging and creates an air of shame around sexual feelings. Denying yourself a mere kiss would create pretty sturdy mental blockers that tell you ‘kissing is dirty’, ‘sex is dirty’, how can people casually put aside these feeling of shame just because they have signed a legal marriage document? Kissing and sex are natural human responses to attraction and love. To deny this goes against our natural urges as humans. How can they possibly know if they are sexually compatibile if they haven’t even kissed? Going from your first kiss to losing your virginity in one day, that’s a lot to deal with. I watched a documentary about a couple who did this very thing. Their marriage lasted mere months and both were left confused and upset at the failure of their marriage. Carissa describes their wedding day kiss as a failure. This is very sad.

And I second the voices who question your need to delete posts that don’t fit in with cheerleading with this couple’s viewpoint. You should specify if you are only interested in cutesy, breathy exclamations of agreement.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I think waiting to kiss until your wedding day despite being in love and wanting to is weird . . . what's wrong with kissing? Little kids kiss on the cheek and mouth!

Anonymous said...

Sorry if this offends some of you, but waiting until your wedding day to do something does NOT prove your love for someone. Nor does it "improve" your relationship.

Anonymous said...

@ t.a., you are wrong, Jewish people were NEVER meant to consummate our marriages during this time! It is a time to remember that despite everything going on around you, you should always spend some time on each other.

Aya said...

I think it's sweet and obviously was the right choice for them but there is NO way I could ever do that!! I like kissing my love in the morning, evening, saying good night or good bye or hello, or when I'm sad or when I'm silly or whenever. Not sharing that daily intimacy with him would feel like a loss.

Alison said...

I can imagine waiting. It sounds very sweet and romantic and they were pretty young when they met. I didn't kiss anyone until I was 23 when I started dating my future husband, and it wasn't until after we started dating that we first kissed. Also Andrew sounds like a smart man, recognizing the temptation to not stop with a kiss.

Twinkle Star said...

Yes! We did it for our wedding/marriage, and would totally do it again! Yes, it was HARD. We believed that God instituted sex/physical intimacy within marriage - yes, it sounds backwards and unwise to most people. Yet, as soon as the pastor pronounced us as husband and wife, it felt like an explosion of emotions and physical excitement. It's almost like Christmas day opening up all the presents (instead of taking a peek before hand) but WAY better! We had to learn how to kiss and all the physical stuff on our honeymoon, and we were no expert in the beginning. However, our physical intimacy grew with our marriage, and it NEVER gets boring and old. (except when I was nursing heavily and learning as a new mother)

Sometimes I think holywood movies make kissing and sex so casual that you can do it with whoever. I am an advocate of saving it all for the ONE (leaving each other is NOT an option for us as well)

It doesn't feel I'm missing out on the experiences on other people either, since I'm married to the most amazing man in the world (to me), I can careless about kissing some Joe Shmoe. So find that most amazing man in the world to you and skip the Joe Shmoe. :)

Anonymous said...

That could possibly be one of the cutest stories I've heard... I didn't know some people waited for their first kiss to be at their wedding, very cute!

http://happygoluckyhappenings.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

Sex pre-dates Christianity, sex pre-dates the Bible.

Sex is NOT a sin.

Kathleen Heffner said...

I read this post last week but i finally have a few minutes to comment. I just celebrated my 36 wedding anniversary on friday! my husband asked me for a kiss on our first date, lo, these many years ago (1973) so I didn't get to wait until our wedding day to enjoy the first kiss. i think its kind of weird, personally. what if you don't like the way he kisses? or he slobbers too much? too many variables.

Luna said...

Jo, was correct to delete comments that personally attacked the couple and their views. Do you even know the couple personally yourselves? I think everyone should read ALL questions before commenting.

janul said...

Well, I have to say I think this is pretty crazy. I hope they are happy and everything, but I would never do this or think it´s a good thing. You never know what´s going to happen in the future. What if they got separated, what if they don´t have enough time to catch up on the kissing...? Anything can happen, or you just end up regreting not kissing. The beggining of a relationship is a special time, kissing will never be the same later, I think.

Anonymous said...

You have an intern?
And no-one else thinks that's odd for a 'personal' blog.....

Margaret said...

We waited until engagement to kiss. Which was four LONG years after we met and about three after we fell in love. We waited til marriage to do anything more than a little kissing. At times I thought we were nuts and our friends definitely thought we were nuts. But i mostly respected that my husband was so committed to me and not his hormones. We made the decision together, by the way. You don't need a sexual relationship to know you're compatible. We KNEW. And five years of marriage and two kids later, we're still good. Americans tend to fall into the trap that love, marriage, relationships need to be easy to be right. And we wonder why the divorce rate is so high. In any case, we were quite happy with our decisions, and we're even happier now that we're married.

Margaret said...

Also, I feel the need to add that waiting to have sex is not the same thing as having a sexless marriage. The point isn't to never express physical intimacy. It is to let things unfold in an agreed-upon order. Before we gave each other everything we wanted that commitment. I think it's incredibly romantic.

Daniel Leister said...

Absolutely, it is a very important piece of a relationship. A first kiss for a new couple can be a little awkward, especially since it was their very first kiss all together...I will not say anything negative about their choice, I support anyone who stands tall with the decision they have made, they should be proud! But in my opinion I feel first kiss is special, intimate and private (as someone mentioned there is nothing wrong with saving the intimate parts of your relationship, I agree); a kiss in front of a lot of friends and family focusing on you is not the atmosphere I would consider intimate.

Daniel Leister said...

Absolutely, it is a very important piece of a relationship. A first kiss for a new couple can be a little awkward, especially since it was their very first kiss all together...I will not say anything negative about their choice, I support anyone who stands tall with the decision they have made, they should be proud! But in my opinion I feel first kiss is special, intimate and private (as someone mentioned there is nothing wrong with saving the intimate parts of your relationship, I agree); a kiss in front of a lot of friends and family focusing on you is not the atmosphere I would consider intimate.

Grace said...

I have to say that some of the comments above were a bit discouraging personally, and I appreciate those who have respect for this type of decision (regardless of their own personal beliefs). My boyfriend and I have never kissed on the lips (just a quick peck on the forehead/cheek/hand during small special moments every now and then). We decided early on in our relationship to wait until our wedding day to have our first kiss...let me tell you that it is incredibly hard!!! But...we're Christian and our values are what guide our relationship over our emotions. It's more important to us to be pure than to satisfy our desires. And honestly, I don't think it affects our ability to be intimate...just the other day a group friends commented about how in love we look...and I just smiled and felt so grateful for the way we are growing our relationship (sometimes it's REALLY hard to wait), and reminds me that it's all worth it in the end. That's just our own personal conviction...I don't think that all Christians have to subscribe to the wait-to-kiss philosophy to live Biblically. We chose to do it mainly because we both felt the other is "too hot to handle" for our own good...and we didn't want to mess up a good thing. :)

Thanks for this post, Joanna! :)

Becca said...

I agree Katie!!! I personally am going to wait and I find it very special... :)

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Alyssa Cook said...

I think it's wonderful! What would be a better wedding gift for your husband than your 103% purity? I'm 14 and I'm considering doing this :)
And she is such a beautiful bride!

Julie Arthur said...

We waited to have sex (the best decision ever) but we definitely didn't wait to kiss!!!! :)

MelanieKPrice said...

I was 17 when I had my first 'true kiss'...one that actually meant something. It was with my highschool sweetheart.

Although there is no way I could have ever waited to have my first kiss on my wedding day; I do admire them for their strength and love for each other to wait for such a special time.

Unpublishedlife said...

I don't know - I think kissing is such an important part of a relationship. To me it signifies that step up from being just friends. My boyfriend and I had known each other for 4 years and it was a simple kiss on the lips that changed everything.

I'm with Clarissa's grandmother - if you love someone, you kiss them. Plus, kissing when it is the right person is just too darn lovely:)

http://unpublishedworksofme.blogspot.co.uk/

Happyeverafter Bride said...

We didn't save our first kiss, and I wouldn't have anyways if we had the chance to go back to it. But my husband left the veil on my head when we had our first 'married kiss' and obviously all the photos had me with my veil suspended in mid air and all the girls were aghast at that slip. When chastised by my friends about it, he goes, Well, it's not like I've ever unveiled a bride before...

Sarah Fancellas said...

I had planned on doing this but changed my mind when I got older. Therefore, I didn't have my first kiss until I was 20. My sister is 25 and is saving her first kiss for her wedding. I also have two friends who did this and they were really glad that they did. :)
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Orchid8Mantis said...

I think it's adorable, and I can totally understand waiting! I had my first boyfriend when I was 16. We didn't kiss until three months later... and it was an accident! We were both trying to kiss each other on the cheek and missed. ^^" He was planning to kiss me at prom night, but oh well! And I would only consider waiting to kiss if my significant other hadn't had his first kiss yet as well. Since he had two girlfriends prior to me, we both knew that we were going to kiss eventually. I'm so thankful that he waited to kiss me for so long! (At least, long compared to my all my friends who kissed their boyfriends like within weeks of dating. I could never do that. :P ) It might've been longer if we didn't have that accident. ^^"

Angel H said...

I think the fact that they waited was sweet! You fall in love with someone for their personality,not their kisses and sex. When my now fiance and I first started dating, he wanted to wait until marriage to kiss also. His reason was that a pastor he had talked to told him that essentially if two people date for a while and break up,you are kissing another man's wife. I did not understand this,nor agree with it but I have never been a religious nut! Now this didn't last, mind you. We kissed about 3 weeks into the relationship and became sexually active 5 months into it. He is my first and only sexual partner,but I had kissed two men before him(first kiss when I was 16) Respect to this beautiful couple for sticking to their guns and doing what they believed was right! I hope they have a long and happy union!

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Anna D Kart said...

My husband and I waited to have our first kiss on our wedding day... Was it hard? No doubt! But it's totally possible and kiss does not determine everything. I've heard people say that after kissing someone they knew that the person was 'the one'.
Kiss is simply a physical reaction to the motions going on. If you build your relationship on trust, honesty, openness and respect, that foundation will help you build a great life together. Sex (and kissing) only gets better with time


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